"Your Social Security Number has been suspended." These are daunting words for anyone to hear, especially over the phone. Scam calls like this have been used to target Americans more and more over the years and seem to be at an all time high.
To diagnose whether the call is a scam or not keep in mind that the Social Security Administration (SSA) will never:
• Tell you that your Social Security number has been suspended.
• Contact you to demand immediate payment.
• Ask you for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
• Require a specific means of debt repayment, like a prepaid debit card, a retail gift card, or cash.
• Demand that you pay a Social Security debt without the ability to appeal the amount you owe.
• Promise a Social Security benefit approval, or increase, in exchange for information or money.
We are all at risk of being targeted by Social Security Scams. To combat these scams, the SSA has launched a new online form that victims of these calls can fill out. The form will indicate trends and data will be collected by the Inspector General's office at the SSA so they can better identify commonalities in the scam calls.
This form will also allow people to create a Personal Identification Number (PIN) with the SSA so that if the Inspector General's office at the SSA does call, the representative will recite that pin to ensure to the person that the call is legitimate.
For more information or to file a form about a scam call, visit https://oig.ssa.gov/.